Relationship building in a digital age

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In today’s business world, relationships are not built only on handshakes, they’re created with posts, applications, comments and other means of digital communication. If you want to reach people where they are you must reach them through their devices.

So how can agents harness this new world of online communication? Read on for some tips and tricks to master the art of digital relationship building.

Getting Smart About Social Media

We must start with social media because it’s the foundation of digital relationship building. You can think of social media as today’s lunch meeting, happy hour and face to face all wrapped up into one.

Use social media to build your digital relationships by implementing the following:

  • Select the platforms you like the most: You don’t have to be on every social media platform to build great digital relationships. Consistency is more important. Select one or two and use them regularly. Also, remember to go where your target customers are found. Are you looking to target first-time home buyers? Why not launch a Facebook campaign with tips and tricks for home-buying?
  • Contact every prospect: Even if they aren’t ready to buy, begin the digital relationship with prospects. Once you are connected on social media, you can create touch points that lead to a sale. They can be made with relevant comments. Post about holidays. Share information about community events and use direct messaging.
  • Remember that it’s a conversation: Digital relationship building still relies on a conversation. Consider the type of talk you would have with a client or prospect over the phone or face to face. Then translate that into the digital world. Tell jokes, have fun, share and listen.  

Related: Maximize your Social Media efforts

Like Post Share: The Foundation for Building Digital Relationships

Social media conversations are conducted with likes, shares, and posts. Here’s some information on what they mean and how to use them to build your relationships in a digital world.

Like: Like and comment on your customers and prospects posts. This is like a quick hello in an online world. It lets your customers know that you heard them. It’s an acknowledgment. Just remember to keep it professional. Digital writing tends to be informal, but your social media communication must stay on point.

Post: Social media posts allow your clients to get to know you. Think outside of the box here. It’s good to share business and insurance related information, but don’t be afraid to get a little more personal. Posts about office events such as birthdays, employee anniversaries or team accomplishments are great ways to build bonds with your social media network.  

Share reliable information: Social media is full of information, but it’s not all good information. Share the most reliable and relevant information available from insurance companies and state regulatory agencies that give good value to your clients.

Also, a blog is a great way to share information with your clients. Create and share regular blog posts based on common questions your clients ask.

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Use Digital Channels to Get to Know Your Customers

Before digital communication, agents got to know their customers slowly over time. Much of that is now done digitally.  

Examine your clients and prospects: There is a wealth of information available on your prospect’s and client’s social media profiles. You can learn about their marital status, interests, whether they own a home or car, where they live and their hobbies.  

All this information allows you to respond best to their insurance needs.

Ask questions: This is a great way to do a pulse check on prospects. Throw out questions on social media channels asking how they feel about their financial future or if they understand how their insurance policies work. Be sure to acknowledge every response.  

Get Your Team on Board with Digital Relationship Building

Good digital relationship building is a team effort. Encourage your team to engage with clients and prospects on social media and other digital channels.

Maybe Fridays you post a weekend related blog. Have a contest for your staff to see who can come up with the post that gets the most likes and shares.

Keeping it Real in a Digital Age

Digital communication is real communication. That means it contains emotion. Be friendly, professional, helpful and relevant to your clients and prospects.

Related: Getting Millennials in the mix

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